December 5, 2012

Thomas Cox: Former Banking Lawyer, now helping people keep their homes

via the Portland Press Herald:

Cox, 68, uncovered the practice of "robo-signing," in which mortgage servicer employees
signed affidavits in support of foreclosure without reviewing the relevant records. He had previously worked in private practice for banks that specialized in debt collection and foreclosures.

Cox was volunteering with Pine Tree Legal Assistance in 2009 when he took of the case of Nicolle Bradbury, a Denmark woman whose home was being foreclosed upon by GMAC Mortgage. Cox figured out that the company's "limited signing officer" had signed thousands of foreclosure affidavits in 23 states without knowing about the cases.

GMAC suspended foreclosure activity in September 2010 and JP Morgan/Chase, Citibank and PNC Bank followed suit. Earlier this year, the country's five largest mortgage services agreed to a $25 billion settlement.

Cox is now building a network of lawyers to do pro bono work. He works in Portland at Maine Attorneys Saving Homes, a joint project of Pine Tree Legal Assistance and the Maine Volunteer Lawyers Project.